Kuwait for Christians: it could be worse

A friend of mine, who lives in Kuwait with his wife and their two children, told me the other day, that he didn’t feel very secure and safe in the country anymore. Not that the situation had grown worse, not at all, but he had simply become more aware of that feeling lately. He just couldn’t put the finger on why.

They are Christians and usually go to church on sundays. No problem of finding the church, although it’s not allowed to display crosses outside church buildings in the country.

And it’s not that his wife had been forced to wear hijab, which she isn’t. And she can even wear a necklace with a golden cross. No problem there either.

So what was the trouble? Maybe, he said hesitatingly, it could be an vague feeling of fear, that he or his wife or their children could be killed any time by any Muslim without any reason at all. Except for being Christians.

As Christians they were ranked as inferior to Muslims. Muslim law doesn’t secure full human rights to non-Muslims, of course quite different to what they were used to back in the USA.

But they didn’t complain, they weren’t alone. Some ten percent (or 420 000) of the Kuwaiti population are Christians, most of them Westerners working there. If you would like to know more about their situation, you could visit the World Watch List that Open Doors publish every year. Kuwait ranks as number 50 on that list, which lists countries where persecution of Christians is the worst. So number 50 isn’t that bad after all.